Preparing for our first born — and second for that matter — was an experience in and of itself. And as someone writing a piece about it, it’s ironic to say that even with all of the research we did, we weren’t prepared for what we truly needed. Ultimately, some of the best things we got were during late night Target runs or Amazon prime orders.
We’ve had a lot of questions about what to get from friends who are pregnant for the first time. We finally wrote them all down and wanted to share some things that really helped us through those first few months and beyond. Please note that we are not sponsored by these brands, but we do use affiliate links in our blog.
We give our insights below, but you can also click these links to explore the products yourself:
- MAM Pacifiers
- Philips Avent Natural Glass Baby Bottles
- Boon Drying Racks
- Little Remedies Medicine (Note: Before using any of these products, always consult a pediatrician.)
- Honest Baby
- Burt’s Bees
We ended up getting a bunch of pacifiers as gifts or through free samples. (If you register at Target for baby gifts either online or in store, you can get a gift. It’s full of coupons and free samples, many times including pacifiers.) But the ones we really felt the most comfortable with — and the ones our little guys took to the best — were MAM ones.
If you’re like most of our friends, I’m sure you’re thinking, “Glass bottles? With a baby?” Especially as sleep deprived parents. Or as a generally clumsy person like me. But these bottles have worked really well for us. We wanted to avoid plastic if we could until it was time for sippy cups and we knew that glass would be easier to clean as well.
We went with both the 4oz bottles and the 8oz ones. Keeping in mind that they start with 5-8 feedings a day and end a year at 3-5, we wanted to make sure to get enough without having too many excess bottles. And since you’re not supposed to reuse a bottle after an hour due to germs, we ended up getting 2-3 sets of each: enough 4oz bottles to last a day and enough 8oz sets to last two days since the baby eats more at each feeding as their stomachs grow.
The packs come with size 0 nipples, so we swapped those out as they grew (1’s for 0 months+, 2’s for 1 month+, 3’s for 3 months+, and 4’s for 6 months+. They also have a variflow version or replacement 0’s.)
The main reasons we liked them were because after trying a few different brands, both of our boys transitioned well from nursing to the bottle and from the bottle to sippy cups with them. They also didn’t hold the smell of old milk (as some plastic ones do even after washings) and we could warm them up in a bowl of water without them float — due to the heavy glass.
The only real downside we encountered was when mixing formula. The heat would sometimes temporarily distort the seal. However, we would just let it cool off for a bit, then open and re-close it before putting them in the fridge.
When you go through as many bottles, pacifiers, and medicine droppers as we did, we were washing his stuff once or twice a day. In come the Boon drying products. We would gently wash the pieces with Dr. Bronner’s castile soap (similar to the soap the hospital gave us during our stay) and their Forb bottle brush. Then we would let it drip dry on the Boon Lawn. They have a variety of sizes and accessories here.
Gripe water, gas relief drops, saline drops, and their fever / pain reliever were staples for us with our little guys. We tried not to give it to them to him unless he really needed it, but it was great to have a brand we trusted when we did.
(Note: Before using any of these products, we always consulted our pediatrician — which is considered best practice. The bottles also include the dosage sizes which is important to adhere to.)
5) Honest Baby
We loved these products because they were gentle on the babies. The diaper cream worked well on their rashes, the lotion was gentle on their cheeks and helped with his eczema, the healing balm was perfect for rough patches, and the body wash worked well for their skin and hair while the smell wasn’t too overwhelming compared to other soaps.
6) Burt’s Bees
We also really enjoy using Burt’s Bees, for both us and the little guys. We still use the body lotion on our three-year-old because he likes the smell, we like the multi-purpose ointment to keep around (something I tend to need more for moisturizing my hands than the boys do during the winter), and the belly butter is something I used well past their births to help with stretch marks.
We’ll keep this one short and sweet. After going through multiple brands of clothes, Carter’s is hands down our favorite. Especially with their embroidered pieces, the outfits keep their quality despite spit ups, accidents, and hot wash cycles.